11th Day Of Home Training

Well it’s the 11th day of home training already. God I can’t believe it. Sometimes I still imagine that I am still on class lol.

Well I had a great weekend. I didn’t do much on Saturday, but on Sunday I took Ushi for a free run.

We went quite late yesterday afternoon. I got her Halty on before we were ready to go. On the way to the park though, my dad noticed that it started to ride up towards her eyes. I don’t think this is meant to happen. I probably put it on the wrong way, but I will ask my instructors when they come later.

Ushi did wonderful obedience, while I was preparing to let her off. She went straight over to some grass, and stood there for ages just sniffing, before she started to run. Unfortunately, every person and his dog decided to be there as we walked. She had a good play with some other doggies, but I called her back, as there was a dog that kind of growled at her. She was grand though. I met a couple of people who said that they sponsored guide dog puppies and all. I thought that was really good, and told them so. They were really fascinated by how good she was, even though she was rather excited by the other dogs, I managed to hold her which was good. I let her off again, and she had a wail of a time. It was only a short run though as we were needing to be back.

She was great at walking beside me, and I asked her to “find home” just to see what would happen. She found it, but i’m not sure if it was just because she saw my sister going in, or because we stopped.

She managed to lose her bells on the run, but thankfully my sister found them. I hope they don’t come off again. Any tips for getting them to stay on the play collar?

I am now sitting waiting for the instructors to come. They are coming at about 10 o’clock. I just thought i’d start writing this blog now. I think they are leaving the harness at the door again which is good. I will let you know how the walk goes!

I’m just back from my first walk of the day. We went down to the shop again. The instructors left the harness shortly after 10 o’clock, and I was ready to go. As soon as I had come off the phone with my instructor (she phoned to say the harness was outside), Ushi was up and ready to go! She must have known!

As we were walking along, a man stopped me to ask me how long I had been training the dog, and how long I had her. He then asked about my sight, and then he asked where I was going. I told him, and he was like “ah so you’re gonna get the papers?” lol. I told him though that I had to get going, as i didn’t want to keep the instructors waiting. I thanked him for the chat, and was on my way. It was nice of him to come up and talk to me, without really bothering with Ushi which was good. I walked on without a problem, until we got to our first crossing point. I told her right, but for some odd reason after we got to tactile paving, she went straight to a kerb on our right. I didn’t know that kerb was there! She got her front paws up on that kerb, and I thought “this doesn’t feel right”. So I stood for a minute and listened to the traffic. I then tried to get her to go straight on, but she wouldn’t go. So i did a “back” turn, and got to the tactile again. This time I just told her “straight on” again, and eventually she went straight on. I still wasn’t sure if i was going the right direction, but I eventually found my zebra
crossing, and it was like Yes i’m deffinetly here. We went on without an incident.

We came back the way too, and again the only problem we had was that we couldn’t find the door again. When i found it, i gave her loads of praise.

The instructors said that there was no reason for her to go to that misterious kerb, and that it was like a “C” shape. They said that she should have kept going straight on. So at least I discovered the kerb which is good for the future.

Apart from that, it was a pritty good walk.

I’ve got to go though now for my second walk.

Well the second walk wasn’t that good. Well it was up until a point….

Shortly after we started out on our second walk, we got to our usual “down kerb” that we get to where we turn right. We then get to the next kerb, and should go straight across the road. There was a man cleaning out his car to the left of me when I was facing this kerb. I don’t know if this threw me, or if i just wasn’t paying attention, but I gave Ushi the “forward” command. It is quite short before we get to the up kerb on the other side of the road, but we kept going on the road, until we ended up facing home again from the other side of the road. In fact we were on the same road as where home is. I could tell that it wasn’t right, so I just stopped, and my instructor came over. She said that it would have been rather difficult to get back on track. Basically, I would have to cross the road again, so that I was on the other side, then do the first rounded kerb again. It was rather complicated, but when i got it, i was soon back on track. I don’t know why that happened, considering I always did it, and got it no problem. It was probably a combination of us both not paying attention, and the noise of that guy hoovering his car, or what. It’s probably something we’ll never figure out lol.

The rest of the walk was great though. That was a pritty major mistake though to walk across the guiding road! I did that the other day too though where I forgot to turn at my kerb. It was a different kerb than today though. Since the other day, I have always remembered my turn, so I hope I remember not to veer across the guiding road! Luckily enough, it was a quiet road. I would like to hope that I would have heard cars if it was busy traffic! I would be extremely worried if i didn’t have the sense not to do it when there was busy traffic!

When we were coming back, we managed to “find home” no problem! We went into the car for a bit after this, as the instructor wanted to do some more paperwork with me.

First of all, my instructor showed me a map of what she had done with string and cardboard, to show me the route. She said that each time you turn, you start a new guiding road, thus a new straight line. The straight line is your guiding road. She showed me what would happen if i went left instead of right. She said that at each road, you have a crossroads sort of to choose from. You can go straight on, bringing you across a road, or else you can turn right or left, or do a “back” turn, to go back the way you came. There was only one kerb i had trouble visualising. I think it helped though having it cut out in cardboard. My instructor wants me to be aware of where the guiding road is at all times. It was easier on the cardboard, cause I was able to work out the actual shape of the route.

Next, we looked at what is known as the “guide dog owners” report. This is for my instructor to know how the dog is getting on. She said it wasn’t to monotor me, but it was to make sure the dog was doing okay, and to make sure that I was able to control her and that. These reports are done once a month, and they are either done on computer, by phone, or by post. I have asked for it to be done by email, as then I can fill it in myself. They are only done for the first 6 months. It is to know the routes that you do and that. It is nothing bad at all. It is just to keep a record of how your dog is doing in general.

That was us finished for the day after that.

I mentioned about the halty riding up towards her eyes, but they said that it was meant to move, and as long as I wasn’t pulling too hard on her. I said that I wasn’t, and that i just had the lead but pulled gently on it. They said that because Ushi has quite a small head, the smaller halty wouldn’t fit her. Trust Ushi to be a bit of an oddball when it comes to things like halties! I said that I wanted to make sure I was putting it on right, and she said that I probably was, but would see this week if i was. We were going to do it today, but we decided not to bother since we did all that stuff about the guiding road and such.

Hopefully tomorrow will be okay again. They were pritty minor mistakes though, which was good. Not like this time
Last week,
Where everything seemed to go wrong.

I should be qualified soon though! What a fun day that will be! Here’s hoping it will be soon.

9 Comments on “11th Day Of Home Training”

  1. Jen says:

    Sounds like a busy day!I find that I always remember mistakes I made at the beginning on certain routes and generally never do them again. I always remember the instructor giving me tips at certain places, so look at all these as an advantage and a way of helping you to remember things.OJ's bell has still never came off during a free run. He's actually had the same one since I got his play collar. Its a bit rusted so needs changed, but its never even fell off in the sea or anything!He has a big head haha.Jen x

  2. Terri says:

    My play collar bell is on like a ring simular to one you put keys on and then there is a metal ring on the collar itself and it attaches and its very hard to get off. Considering how much of a nutter she is on a free run, I've never lost it. Uma broke her first one in half after about 10 months and how she managed that i dont know and the one i have now is fine and i should have it for a while.

  3. Ro says:

    Ah, the mysterious curb. Ha! That still happens to me, even after over six months with Jayden. In fact, it happened yesterday. πŸ˜‰ I think I'm gonna blog about it, but yeah, we got majorly lost. I ended up almost losing it, shouted for help but no one was around. So I had to stop, breathe, listen to traffic and feel the sun. Then, like little saviours, the little yip yip dogs nearby gave a bark and I was like oh! Ok, I know where I am. We got home. It happens. Jayden showed me many curbs hahaha!!! We don't use play collars or bells. But it sounds like a great idea. When you do the free runs, you actually totally let her off lead? Is the place enclosed? Just curious, is it like a dog park?

  4. Torie says:

    My play collar is like a like a little keyring thing that the bells go on too, and like a ring on her collar. I'm not sure how they came off!! Got them back on again though. When we free run, we just take her to a place where there is no traffic or anything, and we just let her go and she has a great time just sniffing the grass and being a dog. What do you use when the dog is right off the lead? How do you know where Jayden is and all?I hate when you miss a kerb! Today i went up the guiding road again, and pulled her to the right i think a bit too much. I got on to the kerb, and started walking, as i thought that if i went a couple of steps, i might figure out where i was. My instructor came up and i totally panicked and was like "oh shit shit shit!" and my instructor was like "no shit shit shit, we're going to work it out!" lol. Traffic is such a useful indicator!I usually remember where I made mistakes too, and always make sure i keep that in my head when we get to that point. I always say in my head "Oh i remember that here we do this", or "at this point i turn left". It's such a great feeling when you get a perfect walk though! Although that's twice i've stepped into the guiding road, but thankfully it has been quiet on my estate which is good. Xxx.

  5. Ro says:

    I don't free run him. He's never off leash if he's not inside. He can run free in Gamma's back yard but it's been too hot. I won't do it anywhere that's not enclosed. Maybe if I had someone sighted…but it would just scare me lol. I want to get a flexi lead though, so he can still be attached, but go further. I won't take him to a dog park because I worry about other dogs. I think maybe things just aren't safe here or something. Glad it's all good there. It would be so nice to have a safe place that's easily accessible to let him run.

  6. Terri says:

    I wouldnt advise a flexi lead, they arent that long and the dog cant run about, they may get tangled in them, plus dangerous for other dog owners as they may walk into it, or their dog may become dangled whilst trying to chase your's about. I was advised strongly by my guide dog team to never use one! collars with bells could be brought from a pet shop and if your guide dogs is the same the dog should have been taught to return when called so you should be ok.

  7. Ro says:

    I wouldn't be using it around other dogs, just around my home, since there's no fence. He is trained to come back to me and does, but I don't trust others, so that's my main concern. It's just different here maybe. Dangerous. Our school actually recommends them, but only a certain type, one that is less dangerous. Anything is dangerous to some degree. I guess for me that would be less scary. Though even then I'd worry. Just better to have him in a nice closed yard. πŸ™‚

  8. Torie says:

    As long as he gets to let off steam though!!! We have a whistle too, so that we can blow that when we want our dogs to come back. So i take it he can't run around at all then unless at your grandmas?Xxx, and I qualified today!

  9. Ro says:

    Oh congratulations!!! Woooo hoooooooo!!!!!!!! Yeeee haaaaaaw!!!!! Happy dance dance dance!!!

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